Texas National Parks
Alibates Flint Quarries Fritch, TX
13,000 years ago this site was already well-known by mammoth hunters as a place to get the best stone for their tools. Centuries passed but the colorful flint found right here in the Texas panhandle never lost its value and usefulness. Visit and gain a sense of how integral this site was to the survival, commerce and culture of the High Plains.
Waco Mammoth - Waco, TX
Standing as tall as 14 feet and weighing 20,000 pounds, Columbian mammoths roamed across what is present-day Texas thousands of years ago. Today, the fossil specimens represent the nation’s first and only recorded evidence of a nursery herd of ice age Columbian mammoths.
NATIONAL RECREATION AREA
Amistad Del Rio, TX
An oasis in the desert, Amistad National Recreation Area consists of the US portion of the International Amistad Reservoir. Amistad, whose name comes from the Spanish word meaning friendship, is best known for excellent water-based recreation, camping, hiking, rock art viewing, and its rich cultural history. Amistad is also home to a wide variety of plant and animal life above and below the water.
Big Bend The big bend of the Rio Grande, TX
There is a place in Far West Texas where night skies are dark as coal and rivers carve temple-like canyons in ancient limestone. Here, at the end of the road, hundreds of bird species take refuge in a solitary mountain range surrounded by weather-beaten desert. Tenacious cactus bloom in sublime southwestern sun, and diversity of species is the best in the country. This magical place is Big Bend.
Lake Meredith Fritch, TX
Within the dry and windswept plains of the Texas Panhandle lies a hidden oasis, a welcoming haven where wildlife and humans find respite from the dry grasslands above. Through this plain, the Canadian River has cut dramatic 200-foot canyons, or breaks, where humans have lived for over 13,000 years. Lake Meredith now occupies these hidden coves where early humans once roamed.
Guadalupe Mountains Salt Flat, TX
Guadalupe Mountains National Park protects the world’s most extensive Permian fossil reef, the four highest peaks in Texas, an environmentally diverse collection of flora and fauna, and the stories of lives shaped through conflict, cooperation and survival. Come experience mountains and canyons, desert and dunes, night skies and spectacular vistas within a place unlike any other within the National Park Service.
Big Thicket Beaumont, TX
Life of all types abounds in the Big Thicket. This national preserve protects the incredible diversity of life found where multiple habitats converge in southeast Texas. Hiking trails and waterways meander through nine different ecosystems, from longleaf pine forests to cypress-lined bayous. It is a place of discovery, a place to wander and explore, a place to marvel at the richness of nature.
Chamizal El Paso, TX
Chamizal is more than just an urban park to recreate or enjoy a quiet afternoon. These grounds are a reminder of the harmonious settlement of a 100-year border dispute between the United States and Mexico. We celebrate the cultures of the borderlands to promote the same mutual respect that helped to diplomatically resolve an international disagreement. Sit for a spell under a cottonwood tree and view the Franklin Mountains, seemingly nestled between the U.S. and Mexico flags in front of the visitor center.
NATIONAL HISTORIC TRAIL
El Camino Real de los Tejas Various States TX, LA
Come on a journey that will carry you through 300 years of Louisiana and Texas frontier settlement and development on a Spanish colonial “royal road” that originally extended to Mexico City, Mexico.
El Camino Real de Tierra Adentro NM,TX
Take a journey on El Camino Real de Tierra Adentro National Historic Trail to savor 300 years of heritage and culture in the Southwest. This Spanish colonial “royal road” in New Mexico and Texas originally extended to Mexico City, Mexico. Two-wheeled carretas carried goods up El Camino from Mexico City in 1598; walking the trail in the Jornada del Muerto, a scorching 90-mile stretch of El Camino wherein colonists had to leave the cool Rio Grande to continue their journey north.
NATIONAL HISTORIC SITE
Fort Davis Fort Davis, TX
Fort Davis is one of the best surviving examples of an Indian Wars’ frontier military post in the Southwest. From 1854 to 1891, Fort Davis was strategically located to protect emigrants, mail coaches, and freight wagons on the Trans-Pecos portion of the San Antonio-El Paso Road and on the Chihuahua Trail.
NATIONAL HISTORICAL PARK
Lyndon B Johnson Johnson City, TX
Lyndon Baines Johnson Lyndon B. Johnson National Historical Park tells the story of our 36th President beginning with his ancestors until his final resting place on his beloved LBJ Ranch. This entire “circle of life” gives the visitor a unique perspective into one of America’s most noteworthy citizens by providing the most complete picture of any American president.
Palo Alto Battlefield Brownsville, TX
On May 8, 1846, United States and Mexican troops clashed on the prairie of Palo Alto. The battle was the first in a two-year long war that changed the map of North America. Palo Alto Battlefield National Historical Park preserves the site of this notable battle and provides an understanding of the causes, events, and consequences of the U.S. – Mexican War.
San Antonio Missions San Antonio, TX
After 10,000 years, the people of South Texas found their cultures, their very lives under attack. In the early 1700s Apache raided from the north, deadly diseases traveled from Mexico, and drought lingered. Survival lay in the missions. By entering a mission, they foreswore their traditional life to become Spanish, accepting a new religion and pledging fealty to a distant and unseen king.
Padre Island Corpus Christi, TX
Padre Island National Seashore separates the Gulf of Mexico from the Laguna Madre, one of a few hypersaline lagoons in the world. The park protects 70 miles of coastline, dunes, prairies, and wind tidal flats teeming with life. It is a safe nesting ground for the Kemp’s ridley sea turtle and a haven for over 380 bird species. It also has a rich history, including the Spanish shipwrecks of 1554.
WILD & SCENIC RIVER
Rio Grande Southwest Texas, TX
It is an irresistible playground where unruly rapids check your skills as a canyon wren’s definitive call cascades down ancient limestone cliffs. Below the chasm, the canyon’s raw beauty dances across mirrored water. While the primal nature of the river stirs hunger for spirited adventure, the river is also an undulant ribbon of wetland corridor and, against all odds, the lifeblood of the desert.